Hi, I’m Solana!
I’m an unapologetically queer, nonbinary, disabled femme, trauma survivor, healing practitioner, and advocate for body liberation + pleasure. I am a facilitator of somatic bodywork, sensual movement, embodiment, and sex + kink education. For nearly a decade, I’ve been honored to work with and hold space for other survivors in various settings—from volunteer crisis counseling to medical advocacy, from sexual health workshops to sensual dance classes and beyond.
My practice is rooted in the deep belief in the body’s innate capacity to heal, and centers clients’ self-determination, agency, and consent. The core of my work is empowering survivors to come home to their bodies using a variety of grounded holistic and pleasure-centered somatic tools. In a world that oppresses and cuts us off from our sensual selves, prioritizing pleasure + connection to the sacred body are radical acts of self-love and care.
While I primarily work with individuals and small groups, I recognize that individual healing and wider societal change are interdependent. My approach to somatic healing acknowledges both the systemic roots of trauma and embodied experiences of oppression; and though nothing can replace the work of community care and large-scale revolution, I believe each person’s healing journey is a seed for collective transformation and liberation.
“Pleasure is not one of the spoils of capitalism. It is what our bodies, our human systems, are structured for; it is the aliveness and awakening, the gratitude and humility, the joy and celebration of being miraculous.”
– adrienne marie brown
Statement of Accountability
For transparency, here is my positionality:
– I am a white settler on the unceded lands of the Potawatomi, Ojibwe, and Miami peoples (colonized as Chicago, Illinois)
– I’m a citizen of the United States since birth, and a native English speaker
– I identify as queer, nonbinary, chronically ill, disabled, neurodivergent, non-monogamous, and kinky
– I’m on the aromantic and asexual spectrums
– I became a single parent to my (now teen) son while still in high school
– I’m a relationship anarchist and a political anarcho-communist, and a police and prison abolitionist
– I live with C-PTSD, severe anxiety, and depression
– My family is from a mixed-class background, and I’m currently in low socioeconomic class
– I have Czech, German, Scotch-Irish, and Lithuanian Jewish ancestry
– I was raised in Christianity, and now practice Naturalistic Pantheism
– Fun facts: I’m an E/INFP; Pisces sun, Taurus moon, Cancer rising; Enneagram type 4, wing 5
The intersections of these various identities I hold—both privileged and marginalized—do not define me, but they all deeply inform the way I move through the world. They also influence how I show up as a healing practitioner; and I recognize that as a white person, I have the potential to unwittingly and unconsciously do harm—particularly to Black, Indigenous, and other people of color, immigrants, and unhoused folks. I am committed to examining and dismantling my own privileges, and being actively anti-racist in my approach to creating safer healing spaces. I’m always available for feedback about how I can show up in a more equitable and liberatory way.
Lineage of Knowledge
I humbly acknowledge the peoples who have created and passed down the healing modalities I engage in, and am mindful of the ways that I use those practices from which I have no direct cultural lineage (such as Reiki and Ayurvedic Massage, which come from Japan and India respectively). Though the teaching of those modalities to other cultures was directly encouraged by their creators, I strive to be cautious in my application of such tools, and to honor rather than appropriate their sacred lineage.
I have learned, practiced, and facilitated my somatic healing work primarily from a place of lived experience. As a multiply marginalized trauma survivor myself, nothing has better prepared me for holding space as a practitioner than the experiences I’ve been through, identities I hold, and healing work I’ve done for and with myself. I do not claim to be an expert in this or any other discipline. However, I recognize the importance of proper training and ethical standards when it comes to working with the body, trauma, and sexuality. Here are a few of my relevant learning and professional growth experiences:
Certifications + Trainings:
– Embodied Healing—the Somatics & Psychology of Trauma, Healing, & Embodiment // Embodied Philosophy
– Healing Sexual Trauma: A Professional Training in Trauma-Informed Care // The Breathe Network
– Coaching As Activism // Andréa Ranae Johnson
– Wild Soul Movement Facilitator // Elizabeth DiAlto, WSM founder
– Reiki Master-Teacher // MSI Healing
– Ayurvedic Head Massage Practitioner // Dr. Karen Wells
– Understanding the Neurobiology of Trauma // Resilience Chicago
– Sex Educator Cornerstone Series // Planned Parenthood
– Abortion Companion Certification // Chicago Women’s Health Center
– Our Whole Lives Facilitator (In Progress) // Our Whole Lives: Lifespan Sexuality Education
– Somatic Sex Educator Certification (In Progress) // Institute for the Study of Somatic Sex Education
Workshops + Courses:
– Creating Culturally Sensitive Healing Spaces // Grace Poon Ghaffari, TMY
– Working Affirmatively With LGBTQ Survivors of Sexual Violence // Brandon Bigby, LMFT
– Embodying Social Justice // Dr. Rae Johnson
– Trauma Therapy: A Somatic Approach // Dr. Albert Wong
– LGBTQ+ Inclusive and Affirming Sex Education // Spark*ED
– Wheel of Consent // Dr. Betty Martin
– Kink, BDSM, and Mental Health // Maria Carrington, LCSW
– Sexuality and Disability // University of Minnesota
– Foundations of Harm Reduction // Harm Reduction Coalition
– Love as a Force for Social Justice // Stanford University
– Healing the Nervous & Attachment Systems Through BDSM // Andrea Glik, LCSW